How to be cool in French – Être Branché

Posted by on Wednesday, October 29, 2014 in Expressions | 0 comments

Être Branché

How to describe all things cool in French

The literal meaning of ‘être branché’ is to be switched on/plugged in – as in to electricity or the Internet.Cables

L’électricité n’est pas branchée. The electricity isn’t switched on.

Figuratively speaking it means to be ‘switched on’ ‘hip’ ‘on trend’ ‘cool’ ‘in the know’ ‘well connected’. Être à la mode, dans le coup, au courant.
It can also mean into something/crazy about – a hobby/an interest – ‘il est branché foot’ ‘he’s crazy about football’.

To be back to front in French is ‘être à l’envers’. Back to front speak is a form of slang in French known as verlan. You swap over syllables so ‘café’ becomes ‘féca’. That’s how it works in its simplest form. Therefore, if you are hipper than hip you can be described as ‘chébran’ as opposed to the only a bit cool ‘branché’, although you could be ‘hyper branché’. How ‘chébran’ are you?

Watch this woody video to help you remember the ‘être branché’ expression.

Want to be able to use this phrase? Then read on…

To be = être

Not to be = ne pas être (Click here for how to form negatives in French)

Conjugation of être – to be

Je suis – I am
Tu es – you are (informal talking to one person)
Il est/elle est – he is/she is
On est – one is/we are (more commonly in speaking than ‘nous’)
Nous sommes – we are
Vous êtes – you are (when speaking to several people or in a more formal situation) click here for explanation on how to use tu/vous
Ils sont – they are (all men or mixed group)
Elles sont – they are (all female group)

Switched on/connected/into something/crazy about something/hip/cool/ahead of the game = branché (the adjective ‘branché’ has to agree with gender and number)
The adjective branché(e)(s) comes from the verb ‘brancher’ ‘to plug in’.

  • So I am connected (if I am a man) – je suis branché
  • I am connected (if I am a woman) – je suis branchée (sounds the same)
  • The men are really well switched on – les hommes sont hyper bien branchés (sounds the same!)
  • The women are really into red wine – les femmes sont hyper branchées vin rouge  (sounds the same!!)

Try these:

  • Are you (informal – singular) into cricket? – Tu es branché(e) cricket?
  • A nightclub is ‘une boîte’ so how do you say ‘a cool nightclub’? – Une boîte branchée
  • Stéphanie is crazy about fashion – Stéphanie est branchée mode
  • The plug is ‘la prise’ so ‘to plug in the plug’ ‘brancher la prise’.

Now say them again without cheating 😉

In this somewhat repetitive song by Simone you can see that she likes to drink in cool clubs – ‘les boîtes branchées’ and is ‘branchée champagne’ – into Champagne – moi aussi!

Here are the lyrics of this song in French and an English translation. Simone Trop Bonne Pour Toi – by Simone

J’espère que vous êtes branché(s) français – I hope you are into French 🙂 Ciao for now. N’oubliez pas – don’t forget to subscribe to the Frogs Legs on Toast Newsletter to be kept updated.

Je suis branchée français

Je suis branchée français


Article Name
How to describe all things cool in French
Learn in fun way how to use the French expression 'être branché' to describe all things cool and switched on.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Follow Me